By Marianne Curtis
As riders sign up for the challenge, organizers of the first annual Actif Apica community festival are getting excited. The one day event which consists of a 130 kilometre bike challenge from St. Malo to St. Boniface kicks off February 18.
Ian Hall, one of the organizers of the event, says that businesses, community organizations and fun-loving individuals have been busy organize outdoor activities at festival sites along the Crow Wing Trail and will be promoted as part of the larger Actif Epica Winter Festival.
“We are also closing in on fourteen confirmed riders and we are hoping for more,” Hall added.
In addition, he is inviting people to join the Coureur des bois class for those with running experience. “If you are up for an 80-mile trek along rivers and across the open prairie we want you.”
Sixty four year old Jim Nadler from Kleefeld has signed up as a participant and he is eager to take on the challenge.
“After many years of long distance running, I have been cycling winter and summer for about 10 years, averaging over 10,000 kms per year for the last five years, so when I saw “Actif Epica” posted on our local cycling blog, I couldn’t resist the temptation to enter the race,” Nadler says.
While some may call him crazy for taking on this challenge, Nadler says that crazy is only a part of it.
“It’s really hard to explain this compulsion to test yourself to the limits, however judging by the hundreds of people who attempt the Manitoba Marathon and Half-Marathon, more and more people have this compulsion,” he added.
The starting line for the ride will be in St. Malo during the Festival des Amis and Festival du Voyageur hosting its finish line. Actif Epica expects to bring together Manitobans of all backgrounds, ages and activity levels to gather, participate and enjoy the outdoors in the winter.
Festival sites in St. Pierre-Jolys, Otterburne, Niverville and St. Adolphe will provide warm checkpoints for the bike riders and form hubs for “Co-Actif ” events. From organized events like hockey tournaments or birding walks to casual games of pick-up shinny and family winter picnics.
Winnipeg’s Green Action Centre will host “Bougeons en hiver: The Jack Frost Challenge,” encouraging teams of 1-5 friends, family, co-workers or classmates sign up to skate, bike, ski, snowshoe or walk a combined total of 130 km in the week leading up to Actif Epica.
For more information contact Hall and David Pensato at 204-960-6743.
64 year old Jim Nadler from Kleefeld is eager to take on a 130 km bike race challenge taking place on February 18.